In industry, AI is useful against drudgery at work

By Anne-Sophie Madoire-Rouzaud
A man and a woman in an industry

Since made available to the general public at the end of 2022, ChatGPT took the artificial intelligence sector into a new dimension. Never before has a tool seen such a rapid rate of adoption*, and many companies devoted 2023 to studying how they could benefit from the sector's breakthroughs. According to IBM, 26% of large French companies are actively using AI, and 45% are working on integrating it**.

This has raised both fears and hopes about the potential of this technology. Those fears are legitimate. Let's face it, many jobs are threatened, and that now includes white-collar workers!

However, we need to overcome these fears. New jobs will obviously emerge, but more generally, what I see in sectors where AI's analytical and predictive capabilities have already been in use for years gives me optimism.


In quality control, a sector in which AnotherBrain is a specialist, many operators still endure working conditions that are considered arduous: repetitive movements and strenuous postures are conducive to fatigue and musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs). These jobs are far from attractive.

Would you want to check products on an assembly line, at a rate of one every two to five seconds? Or spend your time looking for anomalies of a few tenths of a millimeter with a magnifying glass, on hundreds of parts every day?

For years, analysts have been warning of the growing number of unfilled manufacturing jobs on both sides of the Atlantic. In response to this problem, some start-ups like Figure AI has just raised $675 million from companies such as Microsoft, OpenAI and Nvidia, to develop humanoid robots capable of carrying out these missions.

Without going as far as replacing them, AI and its automation capabilities can improve operators' working conditions. By only involving them in case of a problem, they are relieved from fatigue and allowed to focus on less daunting tasks. This is the meaning of progress: human beings seek solutions to simplify their daily lives, improve their living conditions or fulfill their quest for meaning.

Innovations such as the printing press, the automobile and electricity have been the source of profound cultural upheavals, and have also, at the time, aroused fear: faced with what is beyond them, some people experience a "moral panic", in the words of Geneviève Bell, an Australian anthropologist who is also an executive at Intel Corporation. She reminded the Wall Street Journal ten years ago that, in the 19th century, doctors feared that exceeding the speed limit of 80km/h would lead to the combustion of passengers' bodies!

With hindsight, we know that these innovations accelerated the spread of techniques and knowledge, and by extension, freed men and women from many constraints... And this, despite the disappearance of scribes, coachmen and lamp-men.

Innovation allows everyone to flourish in other activities, more in tune with their natural need to express their creativity and empathy, such as crafts or voluntary work. Because if it is adopted on a large scale, it should reduce working hours. In the USA, 93% of companies using AI are considering the possibility of adopting the four-day week, thanks to the time and productivity savings it enables.****

Finally, AI is one of the solutions that can keep our companies competitive. It responds to the problems faced by our customers, in sectors as varied as automotive, aeronautics, luxury goods and cosmetics. These are heritage companies that provide a living for our region, but which sometimes find it difficult to attract the talent they depend on to ensure the quality of products that are increasingly in demand internationally.

France has a lot to offer if it is to become a champion of artificial intelligence, whether in terms of the quality of its researchers or the enthusiasm of its investors. In this sense, we can only rejoice at the progress of AI, be optimistic about its consequences and proud to actively contribute to its development. But let's not forget that, just like printing, automobiles and electricity, artificial intelligence is also a vector of competitiveness for all our businesses, helping to preserve and ensure the prosperity of our society model! 








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